Page 1368 - Week 04 - Thursday, 30 March 2017

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While the gastroenterology and hepatology unit has increased their occasions of service by 17 per cent in the last financial year, as I indicated yesterday the unit has experienced increased demand and has been unable to keep up with that increased demand, resulting in some patients having to wait longer than clinically recommended.

But significant work has been undertaken to increase procedural activity in the unit and address demand, including increasing utilisation of available endoscopy sessions; increasing the number of locum lists and weekend endoscopy lists; transferring suitable patients to Queanbeyan health service for their procedure; and tendering to outsource endoscopy to private practices in the ACT. The unit also intends to duplicate successful processes which recently resulted in significant improvement in access to elective surgery and reduced waiting times.

Mrs Dunne then followed up with a subsequent question around clinical indications. The answer is that there is no evidence to indicate that there has been any detrimental impact on the community as a result of any patient waiting longer than their recommended wait time for a procedure.

Clinical categorisation of elective endoscopy, including colonoscopy and gastroscopy, is prioritised by clinical urgency, which is assigned by the referring specialist gastroenterologist based on clinical discretion following physical examination. Patients who are waiting for a procedure, regardless of category or wait time, remain under the care of their GP. If a patient’s condition changes while they are waiting, GPs can request a review of their patient by the unit, which may result in reprioritising the patient on the waiting list.

Land Development Agency—processes

Public housing—relocations

MS BERRY: I respond to questions on Tuesday about staff at the Land Development Agency. All Land Development Agency staff have been assured that they will continue to have a position following the structural changes announced by the government. No senior executives have been made redundant due to the structural changes. The CEO of the LDA has indicated that he will not be applying for a position with the newly announced entity.

Madam Speaker, in response to a question yesterday on public housing renewal, development on community facility zoned land is one way the government is renewing public housing. Any proposals on future sites will be subject to consideration by the public housing renewal task force and then advised to government.

In relation to purchases from the market, Housing ACT provides input through the public housing renewal task force on the suitability of existing developments being considered for purchase. The number of properties purchased off the market or under contract outside north Canberra is currently around 280.

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